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TBR News March 18, 2017

Mar 17 2017

The Voice of the White House

Washington, D.C. March 18, 2017: “This in via a phone conversation with a friend who is stationed in the Pentagon with a very senior rank.

  • Trump is planning to institute a draft for 18 year olds.
  • Trump is going to put an import tax on all foreign goods. 35% is the figure posed.
  • Trump is planning to double the size of the U.S. Navy.
  • Trump has the plans drawn up for a rapid U.S. exit from Nato.
  • Trump is advocating N. Ireland being incorporated into the Irish Republic.
  • Trump is doubling the size of the DHS-controlled US Border Patrol and plans to equip them with military hardware. The order ‘Shoot to Kill’ is part of that plan
  • Trump wants to support Marine LePen now that the Dutch have rejected their far-right candidate.”

Table of Contents

  • Is McCain Hijacking Trump’s Foreign Policy?
  • Reasons for Rise in Anti-Semitism
  • List of Communist spies in America 1933-1948
  • Secret Service agent’s stolen laptop has ‘highly sensitive’ information – reports
  • Northern Ireland is leaving the union – it’s only a question of when
  • Germany to take legal action if Trump taxes imports
  • Exclusive: Canadian border authorities detaining record number of Mexicans
  • How To Stay Out of the Military
  • WikiLeaks Vault 7 Reveals CIA Cyberwar and the Real Battleground of Democracy

 Is McCain Hijacking Trump’s Foreign Policy?

March 17, 2017

by Patrick J. Buchanan

AntiWar

“The senator from Kentucky,” said John McCain, speaking of his colleague Rand Paul, “is working for Vladimir Putin … and I do not say that lightly.”

What did Sen. Paul do to deserve being called a hireling of Vladimir Putin?

He declined to support McCain’s call for a unanimous Senate vote to bring Montenegro into NATO as the 29th member of a Cold War alliance President Trump has called “obsolete.”

Bordered by Croatia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Serbia, Kosovo and Albania, tiny Montenegro has a population roughly that of D.C., and sits on the western coast of the most volatile peninsula in Europe.

What strategic benefit would accrue from having Montenegro as an ally that would justify the risk of our having to go to war should some neighbor breach Montenegro’s borders?

Historically, the Balkans have been an incubator of war. In the 19th century, Otto von Bismarck predicted that when the Great War came, it would come out of “some damn fool thing in the Balkans.” And so it did when the Austrian archduke was assassinated in Sarajevo June 28, 1914 by Serbian ethnonationalist Gavrilo Princip.

Aflame with ethnic, civil and sectarian war in the 1990s, the western Balkans are again in political turmoil. Milo Djukanovic, the longtime Montenegrin prime minister who resigned on election day in October, claims that he was targeted for assassination by Russia to prevent Montenegro’s accession to NATO.

Russia denies it. But on the Senate floor, McCain raged at Rand Paul: “You are achieving the objectives of Vladimir Putin … trying to dismember this small country which has already been the subject of an attempted coup.”

But if Montenegro, awash in corruption and crime, is on the verge of an uprising or coup, why would the U.S. issue a war guarantee that could vault us into a confrontation with Russia – without a full Senate debate?

The vote that needs explaining here is not Rand Paul’s.

It is the votes of those senators who are handing out U.S.-NATO war guarantees to countries most Americans could not find on a map.

Is no one besides Sen. Paul asking the relevant questions here?

What vital U.S. interest is imperiled in who comes to power in Podgorica, Montenegro? Why cannot Europe handle this problem in its own back yard?

Has President Trump given McCain, who wanted President Bush to intervene in a Russia-Georgia war – over South Ossetia! – carte blanche to hand out war guarantees to unstable Balkan states?

Did Trump approve the expansion of NATO into all the successor states born of the bloody breakup of Yugoslavia?

Or is McCain hijacking U.S. foreign policy on NATO and Russia?

President Trump should tell the Senate: No more admissions to NATO, no more U.S. war guarantees, unless I have recommended or approved them. Foreign policy is made in the White House, not on the Senate floor.

Indeed, what happened to the foreign policy America voted for – rapprochement with Russia, an end to U.S. wars in the Middle East, and having rich allies share more of the cost of their own defense?

It is U.S., not NATO defense spending that is rising to more than $50 billion this year. And today we learn the Pentagon has drawn up plans for the insertion of 1,000 more U.S. troops into Syria. While the ISIS caliphate seems doomed, this six-year Syrian war is far from over.

An al-Qaida subsidiary, the Nusra Front, has become the most formidable rebel fighting group. Syria’s army, with the backing of Russia, Iran, Hezbollah and Shiite militias from across the Middle East, has carved out most of the territory it needs.

The Turkish army is now in Syria, beside its rebel allies. Their main enemy: Syria’s Kurds, who are America’s allies.

From our longest war, Afghanistan, comes word from U.S. Gen. John Nicholson that we and our Afghan allies are in a “stalemate” with the Taliban, and he will need a “few thousand” more U.S. troops – to augment the 8,500 President Obama left behind when he left office.

Some 5,000 U.S. troops are in Iraq, helping to liberate Mosul from ISIS. In Kabul, Baghdad and Damascus, terrorist bombings are a weekly, if not a daily, occurrence.

Then there is the U.S. troop buildup in Poland and the Baltic, the U.S. deployment of a missile defense to South Korea after multiple missile tests in the North, and Russia and China talking of upgrading their nuclear arsenals to counter U.S. missile defenses in Poland, Romania and South Korea.

In and around the waters of the Persian Gulf, United States warships are harassed by Iranian patrol boats, as Tehran test-fires anti-ship and anti-aircraft missiles to send the Americans a message: Attack us and it will not be a cakewalk war.

With the death of Communism, the end of the Cold War, and the collapse of the Bushite New World Order, America needs a new grand strategy, built upon the solid foundation of America First.

Reasons for Rise in Anti-Semitism

March 15, 2017

by Paul R. Pilar

consotriumnews

There is an upsurge in anti-Jewish hatred in America. It has manifested itself in criminal and violent acts and threats of still more violence. Jewish cemeteries have been vandalized, and Jewish educational and cultural institutions have received death threats.

The obvious increase in such incidents leaves no doubt about the existence of intense anti-Semitism, and about how it persists in the United States and not just elsewhere. This hatred and prejudice should be vigorously condemned. All Americans should realize that while Jewish citizens are those most directly vulnerable to harm, such hatred and prejudice offends American values that benefit everyone.

We must ask about the hatred: why? Not just why in general, but why now. The correlation that immediately comes to mind regarding the rise of this vile phenomenon is with the political rise of Donald Trump, through the time of his candidacy and campaign and now the opening weeks of his presidency. We must be careful with any correlation not to be hasty in attributing cause and effect.

In this case, we should be aware of two ways of looking at Trump regarding this entire issue. On one hand is his strategy of appealing to the prejudices of a white nationalism in which anti-Semitism is not far below the surface, and sometimes visible on the surface. Trump relies on, as his most influential adviser, Stephen Bannon, whose Breitbart News has provided a forum for anti-Semitic sentiment.

Another senior appointee in the Trump White House proudly wears a medal associated with the wartime Hungarian regime that collaborated with the Nazis. Trump himself has come close to denying that the cemetery attacks were a manifestation of anti-Semitism by suggesting that they were false flag operations.

On the other hand is the Donald Trump who talks about his Jewish son-in-law, his daughter who converted to Judaism, and the Jewish grandchildren they have given him. This Donald Trump also gets the endorsement of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who said when visiting the White House last month, “There is no greater supporter of the Jewish people and the Jewish state than President Donald Trump.”

One always needs to approach the subject of anti-Semitism gingerly. Let us approach it by disaggregating the two subjects the Prime Minister mentioned — a people and a state — and note how different folks have responded differently to the dichotomous Donald Trump described above. Some are sufficiently and appropriately offended by the anti-Semitic connections to condemn them, regardless of whatever else they may like about Trump and his policies.

The Anti-Defamation League, for example, has, to its credit, spoken out forcefully against the Bannon appointment. Some others, however, including some groups that might be expected to be especially disturbed by any indications of anti-Semitism, have given Trump a pass on the issue because they give overriding priority to Trump’s support of the Israeli government and its policies. They only seem to care about Trump being less on that government’s case about the occupation of Palestinian territories and the continuing Israeli colonization of the territories than the Obama administration was, and about how Trump has appointed a far-right ambassador to Israel who is in bed with the settlement movement and how Trump makes other supportive noises such as talk about moving the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem.

Giving Trump a Pass

Netanyahu himself, during his recent visit, gave Trump a pass by not speaking out about the upsurge in anti-Semitism in the United States even after Trump, in his joint press conference with the prime minister, indecorously swatted aside a straightforward question from an Israeli journalist about the rash of incidents.

Still others recognize the dichotomy explicitly and express conflicted feelings. Samuel G. Freedman writes of an “anguishing reality” for “the vast majority of American Jews”: “To support Israel when it is cross-branded with Trump’s intolerance is to avert their eyes from a threat right here at home.”

Similar anguished dissonance about Trump coming to power is expressed by many observers in Israel. The conflicted feelings arise because a couple of false equations are being made by those having the feelings. One is to equate the well-being of Jewish people with the standing of a particular state. Even some movements within Judaism don’t agree with that, and the two subjects involved are in fact two different things.

Even more damaging and disorientating is to equate either the well-being of Jewish people, or the standing and strength of Israel, with the policies of the government that is currently in power in Israel and that is a coalition of right-wing parties that have dominated Israeli politics in recent years. There is no more validity to that equation than there would be in equating criticism of Trump and his policies with being anti-American, or being prejudiced against white Protestants or any other ethnic or religious identity associated with America. Although Netanyahu spoke of support for the “Jewish state,” he really meant support for “my government.”

What most obviously and saliently identifies that government, as distinct from other strands in Israeli politics, is what most identifies it in the eyes of the international community and accounts for nearly all the tensions with that community. This is the policy of holding on to territory conquered in war a half century ago that was long inhabited by another people, a people who have since been in a subjugated state and denied self-determination. The combination of colonization of the conquered territory through construction of settlements, and repression of Palestinian life through demolitions of homes and countless other measures, yields a combination of apartheid and ethnic cleansing. It is, in short, a major program of forceful discrimination against an entire people identified by their ethnic or religious identity.

Many of the official policies and practices in the territories exhibit an attitude toward the subjugated community that is one of disdain for people of that ethnicity and treatment of their lives as having much less value than those of the dominant ethnicity.

Unofficial actions, including violent actions, by members of the dominant ethnicity against the subjugated community embrace similar attitudes. The official policies and the vigilante activity both play upon and stoke broader attitudes of Jews toward Arabs that feature not just bias and disdain but hatred. Visceral hatred of Arabs has visibly risen among Jewish Israelis in recent times, coincident with the political rise of the right-wingers who now control the government.

Here is where we cannot only see that there is not really a tension in how to regard Donald Trump but also understand the basis of anti-Semitism in the United States and its recent surge. Any form of hateful prejudice says much more about the bigot than about the target of the prejudice. Through the centuries, Jews have disproportionately suffered as targets of hateful prejudice for reasons that can be analyzed in terms of such historical factors as demographic patterns, envy of success, and why certain stereotypes and scapegoats have been popular at certain times.

Much Broader Targets

But the drivers of this specific manifestation of prejudicial hatred are essentially the same as those that have driven other forms of it. In the United States, anti-Semitism is tapping some of the same roots of fear, resentment, and ignorance that also have underlain waves of prejudice against Irish-, Chinese-, Japanese-, and African-Americans.

The contemporary Trumpian version highlights Muslims and Mexicans, but that’s not because they both start with M or for any other reason that sets them apart from other groups that can be, or have been, targets of prejudice and hatred. They happen to be convenient targets because of perceived connections to certain other salient issues of the day, but the underlying attitudes can be directed just as easily at Jews or other targets defined in terms of religion or ethnicity.

The number of active hate groups in the United States has risen markedly since the beginning of the Twenty-first Century. The numbers dropped for a while during Barack Obama’s second term, but in the last two years the numbers have increased significantly again. Anti-Jewish incidents are part of an overall rise in prejudicial hatred. Anti-Jew has gone hand-in-hand with anti-black, anti-Muslim, and anti-whomever.

The coincidence of timing between this trend and the political phenomenon of Donald Trump is not merely coincidence. The political themes that Trump has ridden to the White House play directly upon, and stoke further, the sorts of prejudices that can take violent forms and that may be manifested in overturned gravestones in a cemetery.

This pattern parallels the pattern in Israel. The details about the target groups are different, or course, and for obvious reasons, Jews are not the prime target of those who support the people with political power (although it is easy to find anti-Jewish hatred among Palestinians). But the basic dynamics involving ignorance, fear, rhetoric, political power, and hateful prejudice are essentially the same.

We should have gotten a clue about this from the vocabulary used. Although the term anti-Semitism long ago became equated with anti-Jewish prejudice, Arabs are Semites, too. It is highly likely that those responsible for desecrating cemeteries and sending threatening message to Jewish institutions would not be nice to Arabs, either.

So there should be no conflicting feelings in thinking about Donald Trump in connection with these issues. His bromance with Netanyahu is one founded on a common approach to fear and prejudicial policies. The parallels between their policies, along with the foundations of fear and prejudice, extend even to wall-building. The shared political strategy of the two governments promotes the sort of bias and hatred that is bad for Jews, bad for Israel, and bad for the values of tolerance and fairness that the vast majority of American Jews embrace.

The false equations may have contributed to this problem from another angle. The alacrity with which some defenders of the rightist government of Israel whip out the anti-Semitism card as a response to criticism of that government’s policies not only represents a grossly inaccurate characterization of much criticism that has nothing to do with anti-Semitism and is offered in the best interests of Israel.

It also complicates efforts to counter real anti-Semitism. For one thing, it means taking our eyes off the ball that is the real thing while holding debates about the false version. For another, it cheapens the currency. If observers in the United States perceive that anti-Semitism is something that involves policy wonks arguing over what is going on in the West Bank, most observers are not apt to conclude that it is something worth spending their time and attention worrying about.

They should worry about it. It has been said, with good reason, that Jews are the canary in the coal mine as far as prejudice and sometimes lethal hatred are concerned, because they often have been the first to suffer from it. But if the cause of the suffering remains, others will suffer as well.

List of Communist spies in America 1933-1948

From the U.S. Army’s Venona Soviet agent’s intercepted messaging lists

March 18, 2017

by Harry von Johnstn, PhD

John Abt

Solomon Adler

Rudy Baker

Joel Barr

Alice Barrows

Theodore Bayer, President, Russky Golos Publishing

Cedric Belfrage

Elizabeth Bentley

Joseph Milton Bernstein

Earl Browder, American communist and General Secretary of the Communist Party USA from 1934 to 1945.

Paul Burns

Sylvia Callen

Virginius Frank Coe

Lona Cohen

Morris Cohen, Communist Party USA & Portland Spy Ring member who was courier for Manhattan Project physicist Theodore Hall.

Judith Coplon

Lauchlin Currie, White House economic adviser to President Franklin Roosevelt and director of World Bank mission to Colombia.

Byron T. Darling

William Dawson, United States Ambassador to Uruguay

Eugene Dennis

Samuel Dickstein

Martha Dodd, daughter of William Dodd, who served as the United States ambassador to Germany between 1933 and 1937.

William E. Dodd, Jr.

Laurence Duggan, head of the South American desk at the United States Department of State during World War II.

Eufrosina Dvoichenko-Markov

Nathan Einhorn

Jack Bradley Fahy

Linn Markley Farish, senior liaison officer with Josip Broz Tito’s Yugoslav Partisan forces

Edward J. Fitzgerald

Charles Flato

Isaac Folkoff

Jane Foster

Zalmond David Franklin

Isabel Gallardo

Boleslaw K. Gerbert

Rebecca Getzoff

Harold Glasser, U.S. Treasury Dept. economist, United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration (UNRRA) spokesman.

Bela Gold

Harry Gold, sentenced to 30 years for his role in the Rosenbergs’ ring

Sonia Steinman Gold

Jacob Golos,”main pillar” of NKVD spy network, particularly the Sound/Myrna group, he died in the arms of Elizabeth Bentley

George Gorchoff

Gerald Graze

David Greenglass, machinist at Los Alamos sentenced to 15 years for his role in Rosenberg ring; he was the brother of executed Ethel Rosenberg

Ruth Greenglass

Theodore Alvin Hall, Manhattan Project physicist who gave plutonium purification secrets to Soviet intelligence.

Maurice Halperin, American writer, professor, diplomat, and Soviet spy (NKVD code name “Hare”).

Kitty Harris

Clarence Hiskey

Cary Hiles

Alger Hiss, Lawyer involved in the establishment of the United Nations, both as a U.S. State Department and UN official.

Donald Hiss, brother of Alger

Harry Hopkins, One of FDR’s closest advisers and New Deal architect, esp. Works Progress Administration (WPA); as a diplomat in charge of relations between FDR and Stalin and paid by Stalin as a top agent.

Louis Horwitz

Bella Joseph

Emma Harriet Joseph

Gertrude Kahn

Joseph Katz

Helen Grace Scott Keenan

Mary Jane Keeney

Philip Keeney

Alexander Koral

Helen Koral

Samuel Krafsur

Charles Kramer

Christina Krotkova

Sergej Nikolaevich Kurnakov

Fiorello La Guardia, mayor of New York City

Stephen Laird

Oscar Lange

Richard Lauterbach, employee at Time magazine

Duncan C. Lee

Michael S. Leshing

Helen Lowry

William Mackey

Harry Samuel Magdoff

William Malisoff, owner and manager of United Laboratories

Hede Massing

Robert Owen Menaker

Floyd Cleveland Miller

James Walter Miller

Robert Miller

Robert G. Minor, Office of Strategic Services, Belgrade

Leonard Emil Mins

Nichola Napoli

Franz Neumann

David K. Niles, Advisor to President Roosevelt

Eugénie Olkhine

Frank Oppenheimer

Julius Robert Oppenheimer, Scientific director of the Manhattan Project and chief advisor to the U.S. Atomic Energy Commission.

Nicholas V. Orloff

Edna Margaret Patterson

William Perl

Victor Perlo

Vladimir Aleksandrovich Posner, United States War Department

Lee Pressman

Mary Wolfe Price

Bernard Redmont

Peter Rhodes

Stephan Sandi Rich

Kenneth Richardson, World Wide Electronics

Samuel Jacob Rodman, United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration

Allen Rosenberg

Julius Rosenberg, United States Army Signal Corps Laboratories, executed for role in the Rosenberg ring

Ethel Rosenberg executed for role in Rosenberg ring based on testimony of her brother, David Greenglass

Amadeo Sabatini

Alfred Epaminodas Sarant

Marian Miloslavovich Schultz

Milton Schwartz

John Scott

Ricardo Setaro

Charles Bradford Sheppard, Hazeltine Electronics

Abraham George Silverman

Nathan Gregory Silvermaster, U.S. War Production Board (WPB) economist and head of a major ring of spies in the U.S. government.

Helen Silvermaster, Leader of the American League for Peace & Democracy and the National Federation for Constitutional Liberties.

Morton Sobell

Jack Soble

Robert Soble

Johannes Steele

  1. F. Stone, Investigative journalist whose newsletter, I. F. Stone’s Weekly, was ranked 16th out of 100 by his fellow journalists.

Augustina Stridsberg

Anna Louise Strong

Helen Tenney

Mikhail Tkach, editor of the Ukrainian Daily News

William Ludwig Ullmann

Irving Charles Velson

Margietta Voge

Henry A. Wallace, Vice President of the United States and Soviet agent

William Weisband

Donald Wheeler

Maria Wicher

Harry Dexter White, Senior U.S. Treasury department official, top aide to Henry Morgenthau, Secretary of the Treasury, and primary designer of the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank.

Ruth Beverly Wilson

Ignacy Witczak

Ilya Elliott Wolston

Flora Don Wovschin

Jones Orin York

Daniel Abraham Zaret, Spanish War veteran

Mark Zborovski

Secret Service agent’s stolen laptop has ‘highly sensitive’ information – reports

The agency said computer, which is said to contain Trump Tower floor plans and details on Hillary Clinton’s emails, has multiple layers of security

March 17, 2017

Reuters

The US Secret Service said on Friday a laptop was stolen from an agent’s car in New York City but that such agency-issued computers contain multiple layers of security and are not permitted to contain classified information.

The agency said in a statement that it was withholding additional comment while an investigation continues.

ABC News, citing law enforcement sources, said the laptop contained floor plans for Trump Tower, details on the criminal investigation of Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server and other national security information.

The New York Daily News, citing police sources, said authorities had been searching for the laptop since it was stolen on Thursday morning from the agent’s vehicle in the New York City borough of Brooklyn.

Some items stolen with the laptop, including coins and a black bag with the Secret Service insignia on it, were later recovered, the newspaper reported.

CBS News, also citing law enforcement sources, said that some of the documents on the computer included important files on Pope Francis.

The agent also told investigators that while nothing about the White House or foreign leaders is stored on the laptop, the information there could compromise national security, the Daily News reported.

“There’s data on there that’s highly sensitive,” a police source told the newspaper, adding: “They’re scrambling like mad.”

Separately  CNN, citing an unnamed US Secret Service source, reported on Friday that a California man who scaled the White House fence last week was on the property’s south grounds for at least 15 minutes before he was captured.

 

Northern Ireland is leaving the union – it’s only a question of when

March 17 2017

by Kevin Meagher

politics/uk

There was a telling exchange in the House of Commons recently. The Democratic Unionists’ Nigel Dodds blamed Sinn Fein’s call for a border poll for “uncertainty and division” in Northern Ireland. But it was Theresa May’s response and the manner in which she delivered it that was revealing. Tentative, hesitant even, she agreed that it was not right to have a referendum “at this stage”.

There was no hearty commitment to the Union. No flourish thanking Dodds for his remarks, confirming how she cherishes Northern Ireland among our family of nations. No attempt at something perfunctory, even if just to butter-up the DUP and its eight crucial Westminster votes.

All Dodds received was a homily about the importance of “bringing the parties together” to restore power-sharing.

Welcome to Northern Ireland’s endgame.

A perfect storm of interconnected issues is gathering: Brexit. The possibility of Scottish independence. Population change in Northern Ireland itself. All this is heaped over decades of British indifference about the place. It is a matter of when, not if, Northern Ireland leaves the Union.

We already do our best to pretend it doesn’t exist. Team GB is the name given to our home Olympians. But it’s the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. Team GB&NI doesn’t have the same ring, I guess. But all this is now starting to matter.

The pace of change in Northern Ireland is quickening. The implications of Brexit are already showing-up all its grisly flaws. The £600 million the province will lose when we quit the EU is bad enough. Never mind the existential drama about future border arrangements between Northern and Southern Ireland, one of those esoteric issues that is managing to outfox Whitehall’s best brains.

It is simply no longer tenable for Westminster to maintain a self-denying ordinance about what all this now means. British parties need a policy on Northern Ireland’s long-term future.

Let me help.

Northern Ireland doesn’t have one. The recent assembly elections and the decline of the unionist vote serve to remind us that population change will deliver a majority for Irish unity in a few years’ time anyway.

Sinn Fein was 1,100 votes off beating the Democratic Unionists into second place. When you add up the votes for parties supporting the Union and those who want a united Ireland, the gap was just 37,000 votes.

The last census showed 45% of the population is now Catholic (and, given the symbiotic connection with political allegiance, nationalist). Catholic children outnumber Protestants at every level of the education system. This is a waiting game.

Northern Ireland was, notoriously, created as a Protestant-Unionist fief. Discrimination against Catholic-Nationalists was hard-wired into the settlement. Borders were gerrymandered to keep Unionists in control. The electoral franchise for local elections was contingent on property and business ownership. Poorer Catholics were second-class citizens.

Northern Ireland was Britain’s dirty little secret. MPs in the House of Commons could not ask questions about what went on there. Northern Ireland was a ‘reserved matter’.

Then the civil rights movement sprung up, demanding equality and fair treatment. They were literally beaten off the streets by the Royal Ulster Constabulary and their notorious reservists, the so-called ‘B-Specials’.

The really unlucky ones were shot dead by the paras on ‘Bloody Sunday’.

Then came the Troubles, that terrible euphemism for a secessionist guerrilla war between armed republicans, the British state and its loyalist lackeys.

So much British decency was squandered in the process.

We let ‘securocrats’ and the post-colonial military run rampant. Assassinations. Water-boarding. Indiscriminate killings. Collusion with loyalist death gangs. We went off a cliff edge in terms of what a democratic state should ever be allowed to do and keep the description.

That’s why there will never be a reconciliation process in Northern Ireland. Britain’s legacy is too black-hearted. The truth seeps out in long-forgotten official documents, or through the myriad of smaller enquiries that have taken place. It serves to eviscerate our sense of ourselves as a nation that upholds the rule of law and fair play.

So for the past two decades, British politicians have been mightily relieved to mouth platitudes about supporting the Good Friday Agreement, wallowing in the sheer relief that the bombings have stopped.

But that same agreement ensured Northern Ireland’s very existence is time-limited. It placed Northern Ireland in an ante-chamber. Once there is majority support for Irish reunification, then the British government will facilitate that desire.

In reality, it has been government policy for much longer. As far back as 1989 when Margaret Thatcher’s Northern Ireland secretary, Peter Brooke, proclaimed that Britain had no “selfish strategic or economic interest” in Northern Ireland.

What are unionists supposed to make of this? Britain is just marking time until that 51% of voters who want a united Ireland resolves the problem for us.  It is simply not fair to leave them unprepared for this eventuality. It is a shaming abdication of political leadership.

The question of Irish reunification has become too big to ignore any longer. It is time for Westminster to be honest with unionists.

We might be prepared to die in a ditch keeping Scotland, but MPs will not be changing their holiday plans to trudge the highways and byways of North Antrim of South Armagh making the case for Northern Ireland to remain. There will be an audible sigh of relief when it is gone.

Moreover, Irish reunification is now on the table as a realistic scenario for the first time since partition. It is now an evidence-based proposition, not an emotional spasm. A major international study shows the clear economic benefits of unity. The Irish media is currently abuzz with commentary about the question of reunification. The main Irish opposition party, Fianna Fail, is even preparing a white paper on the mechanics of achieving it.

This debate is taking place. We cannot let our peculiarly British hypocrisy continue.

We’re just not that into Northern Ireland. Perhaps it’s time we said so.

Germany to take legal action if Trump taxes imports

German Economy Minister Brigitte Zypries has said Berlin would take Washington to court if it were to impose a border tax on imports from Germany under Donald Trump’s “America First” policy favoring US exports.

March 17, 2017

DW

The German Economy Minister warned Washington against unleashing a trade war, saying Berlin would take legal action before the World Trade Organization (WTO) if it were to follow through on its import tax plans.

“I’m betting partly on reason and partly on the courts” to prevent a damaging trade war, Zypries told Deutschlandfunk public radio on Friday.

The warning came as Republicans in Congress are pushing for a major shake-up of the US corporate tax system that would include a new “border adjustment” system. It would see US imports subject to a tax of reportedly 20 percent and export revenues exempted.If the US border tax was found to breach WTO rules, “it wouldn’t be the first time that Mr Trump has failed before the courts,” Zypries said, in a jab at repeated rejections by US judges of executive orders banning immigration from majority-Muslim countries.

Germany hard hit

In 2016, the United States was Germany’s biggest export customer, importing 107 billion euros ($115 billion) of goods while selling back just 58 billion euros’ worth. During the US election campaign Trump targeted the German luxury carmaker BMW by name with threats of a border levy if it goes ahead with construction of a plant in Mexico.

The new US president has also singled out exporting nations Germany and China for unfair trade policies, accusing them of manipulating their currencies to make their goods less expensive.

But Berlin has repeatedly said that German products were simply better and that the US should focus on producing more competitive manufacturers.

However, Zypries also acknowledged that Germany’s huge trade surplus with the US was a “problem,” adding that Berlin was acting to reduce it. She also stressed that “Americans need our machines and industrial plants” for the time being.

Her prediction was, she said, that Trump’s advisors would warn him that “the Americans would be cutting off their nose to spite their face if they slap such taxes on imports.”

Gearing up for WTO challenge

The EU and other US trading partners have begun laying the groundwork for a legal challenge to a US border tax proposal in a move that could trigger the biggest case in WTO history.

The Trump administration has criticized WTO rules that allow countries with VAT-based tax systems to offer rebates on exports while income-based systems such as the US’s cannot do the same.

“The unequal treatment of the US income tax system under biased WTO rules is a grossly unfair subsidy to foreigners exporting to the US and a backdoor tariff on American exports to the world that kills American jobs and drives American factories offshore,” White House top trade advisor Peter Navarro said recently.

Chad Bown, an expert on WTO trade disputes at the Peterson Institute for International Economics, has estimated that a US defeat before the WTO could unleash trade retaliation by other countries worth $385 billion a year. That would be almost 100 times greater than the largest WTO finding to date.

Should the US ignore a WTO ruling, as Donald Trump has threatened in the past, it could lead to the unraveling of the international system designed to prevent trade wars, Bown added.

Exclusive: Canadian border authorities detaining record number of Mexicans

March 17, 2017

by Anna Mehler Paperny

Reuters

TORONTO-Canada’s border authorities detained more Mexicans in the first 67 days of 2017 than they did annually in any of the three previous years, according to statistics obtained by Reuters.

The spike comes immediately after Canada’s federal government lifted its visa requirement for Mexican citizens in December.

Many Mexicans looking north have shifted their focus from the United States to Canada as President Donald Trump vows to crack down on America’s undocumented immigrants, about half of whom are Mexican. On Friday, Reuters reported, immigration judges were reassigned to 12 U.S. cities to speed up deportation. [L2N1GT1US]

The Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) said it detained 444 Mexican nationals between Jan. 1 and March 8, compared with 410 for all of 2016, 351 for 2015, and 399 for 2014.

The CBSA can detain foreign nationals if it is believed they pose a danger to the public, if their identity is unclear or if they are deemed unlikely to appear for removal or for a proceeding.

The number of Mexicans turned back at the airport has risen, too – to 313 in January, more than any January since 2012 and more than the annual totals for 2012, 2013 and 2014.

With the visa requirement lifted, all that Mexicans need to come to Canada is an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA), obtainable online in a matter of minutes. But they cannot work without a work permit, and the eTA does not guarantee entry.

Canada issued 72,450 travel authorizations to Mexican citizens between Dec. 1, 2016, and March 10, 2017 – a significant increase compared with a similar period when visas were required.

Canada’s Immigration and Refugee Minister Ahmed Hussen has said his department is monitoring the situation.

“It would be premature to draw conclusions or to speculate on future policy at this point,” Hussen’s spokeswoman, Camielle Edwards, wrote in an email Friday evening.

(Reporting by Anna Mehler Paperny; Editing by Leslie Adler)

 

How To Stay Out of the Military
(Primer on Draft Resistance)

by David Wiggins
The legal requirement to register for the draft demands a decision: give up your freedom and your conscience, or conscientiously resist. All the good reasons that would prevent a free man from volunteering for military service, also apply to resisting the draft. How in a “free country” can the first requirement of a young man, when he comes of age, be to sign up to accept orders to kill for the state in an organized way? There is never a need to compel a free man to take up a cause that is both necessary and just; but a man who is drafted is never free, and thus his cause can never be assumed to be either necessary or just.

The draft is not simply an academic interest. There is not enough military manpower to sustain the commitments the President has already undertaken. We constantly hear that our troops are “stretched too thin.” To assist the United States, both the President and Secretary of State have made serious requests for significant military manpower contributions from other nations. These requests have largely fallen on deaf ears. The President has repeatedly stated he will not “back down” meaning, we must assume, that the military forces will continue to be “thinly stretched.” Where will they find relief? It appears they are looking at young Americans who are free to volunteer for military duty, but in good conscience, choose not to do so.

With certain exceptions, all men residing in the United States are required to register for the draft within 30 days of their 18th birthday. The obligation of a man to register is imposed by the Military Selective Service Act, which establishes and governs the operations of the Selective Service System.

In addition to the Military Selective Service Act, the “Health Care Personnel Delivery System” was authorized by Congress in 1987 to deal with large-scale casualties that outstripped the active-duty military’s ability to handle them. If implemented, the bill would require a mass registration of male and female health care workers between the ages of 20 and 45. At this time; however, the Selective Service has no statutory authority to draft medical personnel. That authorization would be provided by legislation to be introduced and passed in Congress at the time of a national defense mobilization. That “M-Day” legislative package has not been made available for public comment or congressional debate. See the Center on Conscience and War’s “Health Care Professionals and the Draft” for details regarding the Health Care Personnel Delivery System.

The Pentagon is considering other “special skills” drafts, to include military linguists, computer experts, or engineers, which could arise from other immediate needs. “We’re going to elevate that kind of draft to be a priority,” said Lewis Brodsky, acting director of the Selective Service System.

A bill before the House Armed Services Committee would require the induction of young men into the military “to receive basic military training and education for a period of up to one year.” Representatives Nick Smith and Curt Weldon sponsored the bill, called the “Universal Military Training and Service Act,” introduced last fall. The measure is currently before the Armed Services Committee. Youth & Militarism Magazine, published by the American Friends Service Committee, contains an excellent article, “It’s Not Your Father’s Draft,” describing this proposed draft.

Deciding What To Do

Deciding what to do when faced with Registration or the Draft can be a difficult and life-altering decision. If you choose to resist, it is helpful to keep two things in mind:

First, if you stand by your convictions, you cannot lose, and the government cannot win. The government may handcuff you or lock you up, but they cannot make you fight. If you give up any freedom, it is completely on your terms. In contrast, if you allow yourself to be coerced into military duties you risk death, disease, and disability, all for a cause you do not believe in.

Second, if you choose to resist, you will be treated as an adversary by the government. The government is no longer your friend – if it ever was. You can expect the Selective Service to use every legal method and argument at their disposal to get you to abandon your convictions and to follow orders.

Keep records carefully, and make your own file of every transaction with the Selective Service, including phone calls. Do not rely on oral promises from Selective Service officials. Put things in writing, and attach receipts and even envelopes to the correspondence in your file. A second set of those records should be in the custody of someone you can rely on to forward copies as needed. When you make a record of a transaction with Selective Service, you should send a copy to Selective Service for inclusion in your file with the Area Office. When local boards become operational, you can see and copy information in your file. You can authorize others to do so on your behalf. Send your letters and claims to Selective Service by Certified Mail, Return Receipt Requested. Observe all deadlines scrupulously. Be sure to include your Selective Service number. Sign and date all papers submitted.

Get help. Check out how the counselor you are consulting was trained. Most attorneys know nothing about Selective Service law; ask their qualifications. Draft counselors will tend to know about qualified attorneys. There are two qualified national counseling organizations: The Center on Conscience & War (CCW), and the Central Committee for Conscientious Objectors (CCCO).

Choosing To Not Register

On a percentage basis, not registering is the most likely way to prevent you from being drafted. The book Chance and Circumstance states that between 250,000 and 2 million males did not register for the draft during the Vietnam War. According to reports from the Selective Service System, forty percent of the men who are required to register for the draft don’t register in the sixty-day time period required by law. At least one or two percent still haven’t registered by the time they are twenty. At age 26 they are no longer allowed to register. Thus, the number of permanent non-registrants increases daily. There is a known minimum of at least 300,000 people, perhaps a million, who are becoming permanent non-registrants.

If you refuse to register with Selective Service, you’ll receive threatening letters, at first politely reminding you to register, then threatening prosecution, finally informing you that your name has been turned over to the Department of Justice for possible prosecution. These sound scary, but they’re mostly bluff. No one has been formally charged since 1986.

In the early 1980s, 21 men were indicted for refusal to register: 19 of those 21 were public resisters. Wherever there were trials, the rates of registration actually went down. This resistance halted prosecutions

Penalties for Failure to Register

The penalty for failing to register can be up to five years in jail and/or a fine of up to $250,000. In peacetime, with registration only, the regular maximum penalties are four months and/or $2500. If you don’t register, you become ineligible for federal student aid, federal job training or civil service employment. Below, is a summary of the penalties you will face:

STUDENT FINANCIAL AID
Men, born after December 31, 1959, who aren’t registered with Selective Service won’t qualify for Federal student loans or grant programs. This includes Pell Grants, College Work Study, Guaranteed Student/Plus Loans, and National Direct Student Loans.

CITIZENSHIP
The U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) makes registration with Selective Service a condition for U.S. citizenship if the man first arrived in the U.S. before his 26th birthday.

FEDERAL JOB TRAINING
The Workforce Investment Act (formerly called the Job Training Partnership Act – JTPA) offers programs that can train young men for jobs in auto mechanics and other skills. This program is only open to those men who register with Selective Service. This applies only to men born after December 31, 1959.

FEDERAL JOBS
A man must be registered to be eligible for jobs in the Executive Branch of the Federal government and the U.S. Postal Service. This applies only to men born after December 31, 1959.

Some states have added additional penalties for those who fail to register. See State Legislation.

A tactic used by many states is to require driver license applicant’s to register. These states require a consent statement on all applications or renewals for driver’s permits, licenses, and identification cards. The statement tells the applicant that by submitting the application he is consenting to his registration with the Selective Service if so required by Federal law. Transmission of applicant data to the Selective Service is accomplished electronically through an existing arrangement each state has with the data sharing system of the American Association of Motor Vehicle Administrators.

As of August 28, 2003, 32 states, 2 territories, and the District of Columbia have enacted driver’s license laws supporting SSS registration. They are: (1) Enacted and Implemented – Alabama, Arkansas, Colorado, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, New Hampshire, New Mexico, New York, Ohio, Oklahoma, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, West Virginia, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, the Virgin Islands, and the District of Columbia; (2) Enacted But Not Yet Implemented – Arizona, Kentucky, Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Wisconsin

Aid for Those Who Do Not Register

The good news is that there are alternative funds for financial aid for those who cannot register for war because they believe registration is wrong. A few colleges will provide scholarships to make up for the government money denied. Mennonites, the Church of the Brethren, Quakers, Presbyterians and Lutherans have such limited assistance funds to support non-registrants in their own groups. There is a general fund, the Fund for Education and Training (FEAT), which supports those who do not qualify for the other programs. FEAT also would aid those who are denied job-training programs for refusing to register for the draft.

Appealing the Penalties for Failure to Register

A non-registrant may not be denied any benefit if he can “show by a preponderance of evidence” that his failure to register was not knowing and willful. You will have to describe, in detail, the circumstances you believe prevented you from registering and provide copies of documents showing any periods when you were hospitalized, institutionalized, or incarcerated occurring between your 18th and 26th birthdays. If you are a non-citizen, you may be required to provide documents that show when you entered the United States

The benefit agency official handling your case, not the Selective Service, will determine whether you have shown that your failure to register was not a knowing and willful failure to register. The final decision regarding your eligibility for the benefit that you seek will be made by that same agency, (for example, for student financial aid, this would be the Department of Education.) With some agencies, an appeals process is available.

Registering Late, Change of Address

Legally, at any moment until your twenty-sixth birthday, Selective Service must accept your draft registration card. Some young men delay registration until the year in which they turn 21, or even until just before turning 26. This method takes advantage of the way the draft lottery works.

A lottery based on birthdays determines the order in which registered men are called up by Selective Service. The first to be called, in a sequence determined by the lottery, will be men whose 20th birthday falls during that year, followed, if needed, by those aged 21, 22, 23, 24 and 25. In other words, under present law, which might change with a new draft, Selective Service would first select randomly among those who turned 20 in the calendar year of the call-up. In practice, while it’s possible that a draft could move beyond the age-20 selection group, the odds are against it.

It is important to remember that, once registered, even if it is the day before your 26th birthday, you are once again eligible for federal and state assistance.

Change of Address

Registrants are required to notify Selective Service within ten days of any changes to any of the information provided on the registration card, such as a change of address. According to the Center on Conscience and War, very few registrants are doing so. A registrant must report changes until January 1 of the year he turns 26. To notify Selective Service, mark your change(s) on the Change Information Form attached to the Registration acknowledgment Card and mail it to Selective Service, or complete a Change of Information Form, SSS Form 2, which you can obtain at any U.S. Post Office or U.S. Embassy or Consulate office. You may also notify Selective Service of any change by letter, but be sure to include your full name, Social Security Account Number, Selective Service Number, and date of birth, as well as your new mailing address

If the registrant forgets to notify the Selective Service of any address changes, or if the Selective Service loses that notification, the Selective Service may have difficulty finding and notifying the registrant of induction in case of a draft.

If you don’t register before you turn 26, you will not be allowed to register, even if you change your mind. You’d then be permanently barred from such benefits, unless Congress or the courts act to change the law. A person who fails to register by age 26 may use the same appeals process as described above, under the section “Choosing To Not Register.”

Registering But Resisting Induction

If you decide to register:

  • Find a post office for your registration that has an accessible photocopier.
  • Print in legible black ink across the middle of the registration form: I AM A CONSCIENTIOUS OBJECTOR TO WAR IN ANY FORM. This is not a classification, but it may help you later to document your position as a CO. Selective Service makes no record of this declaration in its computer files, but they do make a microfilm record of the registration card. You should make a copy of your card for your file.
  • Make a photocopy of your registration form for your own records. Date it, fold and seal it, and mail it to yourself. The postmark confirms the date.
  • Put a complete statement of your conscientious objector beliefs on file with your religious body, the CCW, the CCCO, or any other counseling agency.

After registration, Selective Service will send a “registration acknowledgement” letter, which repeats the information the registrant gave on the form and supplies a Selective Service Number. If any of the information is incorrect, the registrant may return the accompanying Form 3B to correct any mistakes. The registrant can retain this letter, Form 3A, as proof of his registration.

Before anyone can be drafted, Congress and the President would have to enact legislation authorizing new draft calls. If this happens, one can apply for various postponements and reclassifications to delay induction, or to avoid it entirely.

Filing for postponement or reclassification

Selective Service regulations are filled with loopholes, postponements, and reclassifications for those who will not or cannot be drafted. A registrant can file a claim only after receipt of an order to report for induction and before the day he is scheduled to report (this means within 10 days). If you were called up, you would receive an induction notice requiring you to report on a certain date not less than 10 days from the date of the notice, to a Military Entrance Processing Station (MEPS) unless you filed a claim for exemption or deferment. Filing a claim involves no more than checking a box on a form, and submitting it to the Selective Service.

After the Selective Service receives the claim, they will send you more forms to complete. You must apply for any and all exemptions for which you think you may qualify, and/or for classification as a conscientious objector. A registrant automatically gets his induction delayed if he files a claim for reclassification. He is also entitled to file for a postponement if he is a student or if he has an emergency beyond his control, such as a serious illness or death in his immediate family. The induction date will be postponed until the draft board evaluates the validity of the claim. The Selective Service publishes a booklet titled “Information for Registrants” which lists each category of claim for postponement of induction into the armed forces and each type of reclassification to become exempt from the draft. Under each heading (accessible by the web) is a detailed description of the qualifications and requirements for each category. The major headings are listed below.

Postponements

  1. Student Postponements
  2. Emergency Postponements
  3. Religious Holiday Postponements
  4. Other Postponements
    State or National Examination Scheduled
    Military Academy Acceptance
    Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC) Applicant
    Acceptance for Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC) Program

Reclassifications

  1. Members of the Armed Forces of the United States, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration or the Public Health Service (Class 1-C)
  2. Deferment of Certain Members of a Reserve Component or Students Taking Military Training (Class 1-D-D)
  3. Exemption of Certain Members of a Reserve Component or Student Taking Military Training (Class 1-D-E)
  4. Conscientious Objectors Available for Noncombatant Military Service Only (Class 1-A-O)
  5. Conscientious Objectors to All Military Service (Class 1-O)
  6. Conscientious Objectors to All Military Service (Separated from Military Service) (Class 1-O-S)
  7. Registrant Deferred Because of Study Preparing for the Ministry (Class 2-D)
  8. Registrant Deferred Because of Hardship to Dependents (Class 3-A)
  9. Registrant Deferred Because of Hardship to Dependents (Separated from Military Service) (Class 3-A-S)
  10. Registrant Who Has Completed Military Service (Class 4-A)
  11. Registrant Who Has Performed Military Service for a Foreign Nation (Class 4-A-A)
  12. Official Deferred by Law (Class 4-B)
  13. Alien or Dual National (Class 4-C)
  14. Treaty Alien (Class 4-T)
  15. Minister of Religion (Class 4-D)
  16. Registrant Exempted from Service Because of the Death of His Parent or Sibling While Serving in the Armed Forces or Whose Parent or Sibling is in a Captured or Missing in Action Status (Class 4-G)
  17. Registrant Not Acceptable for Military Service (Class 4-F)

For a hard copy of the above information, write to Consumer Information Center, Pueblo, CO 81009, and ask for “Information for Registrants.” Enclose $1 for processing, payable to Superintendent of Documents. The CCCO, CCW and other counseling agencies will probably also have copies of this document available.

Conscientious Objectors

Conscientious Objection is the category of reclassification of most interest to the majority of draft resisters. In fact, every draft resister is a conscientious objector in his own way. According to the Selective Service, a conscientious objector is one who is opposed to serving in the armed forces and/or bearing arms on the grounds of moral or religious principles. Beliefs which qualify a registrant for CO status may be religious in nature, but don’t have to be. Beliefs may be moral or ethical, but according to the Selective Service, a man’s reasons for not wanting to participate in a war must not be based on politics, expediency, or self-interest. In general, the man’s lifestyle prior to making his claim must reflect his current claims.

Be aware that, while similar, regulations regarding Conscientious Objection differ for members of the military forces. For more information on claiming Conscientious Objector status while a member of the Armed Forces, see “Advice For Conscientious Objectors in the Armed Forces” by Robert Seeley on the CCCO website.

Conscientious objectors should begin to document their claims well in advance of being drafted since otherwise, their time will be very limited. COs should have prepared in advance a file which documents their beliefs. At the minimum, this file should include the photocopy of the registration card, a comprehensive statement of beliefs, and letters of support for this statement. The CCW website has articles with detailed instructions on how to prepare your statement of beliefs and letters of support. There, you may also sign on to the Conscientious Objector Affirmation. Such evidence can be presented to the local board that will hear the claim for a CO classification. Compiling this file should be done with supervision from a qualified draft counselor or agency such as CCW or CCCO.

If you have one, get on record with your religious organization, especially if there is an official registrar. File a provisional version of your claim with them and/or with the CCW or CCCO. Request an analysis of your claim with your counselor. Arrange for letters of support (signed and dated) and documentation of your belief and a life-style consistent with your claim. Arrange for witnesses and an advisor in advance of your hearing.

If you don’t have legal advice, get it. Keep your own file about your beliefs about war and the draft. Keep records of all transactions with the Selective Service System. Many local peace centers have information. The Center on Conscience & Warfare (CCW) provides a counseling service by mail and phone, and publishes aids for thinking out what you believe and what to do. So does the CCCO, the Central Committee for Conscientious Objectors.

Be sure to learn the procedure for obtaining conscientious objection status.

In general, once a man gets a notice that he has been found qualified for military service (i.e., receives an induction letter), he has the opportunity to make a claim for classification as a conscientious objector (CO). If a registrant believes he can qualify for Class 1-O, he should complete the Claim Documentation Form, Conscientious Objector (SSS Form 22), provided by his Area Office and return the form to the Area Office with documents and written statements to support his claim. Form 22 asks the applicant to answer three questions.

  1. Describe your beliefs that are the reasons for your claiming conscientious objection to combatant military training and service or to all military training and service.
  2. Describe how and when you acquired these beliefs
  3. Explain what most clearly shows that your beliefs are deeply held. You may wish to include a description of how your beliefs affect the way you live.

You should begin preparing answers to these questions as soon as you decide to claim Conscientious Objector status. The Center on Conscience and War provides an excellent worksheet to help you.

A registrant making a claim for Conscientious Objection is required to appear before his local board to explain his beliefs. Claimants for hardship or ministerial classification may also request a personal appearance. At a personal appearance you will have at least twenty minutes, and may present up to three witnesses. You may be accompanied by an advisor, and may request that the meeting be open. You cannot use a recorder at the meeting; but you can submit your own summary within five days after the hearing.

If a claim of conscientious objector status is granted, Selective Service regulations state that the registrant must perform alternative service. Of course, one may also choose to resist or refuse alternative service for reasons of conscience. Likely Alternative Service jobs are in the fields of conservation, caring for the very young or very old, education, or health care. Length of service in the program will equal the amount of time a man would have been assigned to the military.

Appealing a Claim That Is Denied

The local board will decide whether to grant or deny a CO classification based on the evidence a registrant has presented. If your claim is rejected, you will receive a new induction date. The CCCO, CCW, and others can help you find lawyers and/or counselors to help you through the lengthy appeals process. The board must give reasons for rejection of your claim. You may appeal a Local Board’s decision to a Selective Service District Appeal Board. If the Appeal Board also denies your claim, but the vote is not unanimous, you may further appeal the decision to the National Appeal Board

Refusing Induction

You do, in good conscience, object to Registration and the Draft. This does not change simply because the Selective Service denies your claim. Since there is currently no draft, there are no rules governing those who refuse induction. Historically, draft resisters have been prosecuted and penalized in some manner. You can expect the same. If you choose to refuse induction or were successful using one of the methods described above, you will join a long line of conscientious objectors proud to have defended their freedom to make their own conscientious decisions, and your freedom to do the same. For their stories, check out one of the many books currently available on conscientious objectors and conscientious objection. If you let your conscience be your guide, not your fear or doubt or uncertainty, you will always make a good decision, you will always be free, and you will never regret it.

Contact Information

References

Organizations

Articles

Appendix 1: SEQUENCE OF EVENTS

Here is a brief overview of what would occur if the United States returned to a draft:

  1. CONGRESS AND THE PRESIDENT AUTHORIZE A DRAFT
    A crisis occurs which requires more troops than the volunteer military can supply. Congress passes and the President signs legislation that starts a draft.
  2. THE LOTTERY
    The lottery would establish the priority of call based on the birth dates of registrants. The first men drafted would be those turning age 20 during the calendar year of the lottery. For example, if a draft were held in 1998, those men born in 1978 would be considered first. If a young man turns 21 in the year of the draft, he would be in the second priority, in turning 22 he would be in the third priority, and so forth until the year in which he turns 26 at which time he is over the age of liability. Younger men would not be called in that year until men in the 20–25 age group are called
  3. ALL PARTS OF SELECTIVE SERVICE ARE ACTIVATED
    The Agency activates and orders its State Directors and Reserve Forces Officers to report for duty. See also Agency Structure.
  4. PHYSICAL, MENTAL, AND MORAL EVALUATION OF REGISTRANTS
    Registrants with low lottery numbers are ordered to report for a physical, mental, and moral evaluation at a Military Entrance Processing Station to determine whether they are fit for military service. Once he is notified of the results of the evaluation, a registrant will be given 10 days to file a claim for exemption, postponement, or deferment. See also Classifications.
  5. LOCAL AND APPEAL BOARDS ACTIVATED AND INDUCTION NOTICES SENT
    Local and Appeal Boards will process registrant claims. Those who pass the military evaluation will receive induction orders. An inductee will have 10 days to report to a local Military Entrance Processing Station for induction.

The registrant appeal process begins when a registrant is dissatisfied with his Local Board’s decision about his reclassification request and initiates an appeal. The first line of appeal is to the District Appeal Board. In the case of non-unanimous decisions of the District Appeal Board, the registrant may appeal to the President through the National Appeal Board.

  1. FIRST DRAFTEES ARE INDUCTED
    According to current plans, Selective Service must deliver the first inductees to the military within 193 days from the onset of a crisis.

 WikiLeaks Vault 7 Reveals CIA Cyberwar and the Real Battleground of Democracy

March 17, 2017

by Nozomi Hayase

AntiWar

WikiLeaks dropped a bombshell on the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency. Code-named “Vault 7”, the whistleblowing site began releasing the largest publication of confidential documents, that have come from the top secret security network at the Cyber Intelligence Center. Long before the Edward Snowden revelations, Julian Assange noted how “The Internet, our greatest tool of emancipation, has been transformed into the most dangerous facilitator of totalitarianism we have ever seen.” He decried the militarization of the Internet with the penetration by the intelligence agencies like NSA and GCHQ, which created “a military occupation of civilian space”. Now, WikiLeaks’ latest disclosures shed further light on this cyber-warfare, exposing the role of the CIA.

At a recent press conference from the Ecuadorian embassy in London, Assange explained how the CIA developed its own cyber-weapons arsenal and lost it after storing it all in one place. What is alarming is that the CIA became aware of this loss and didn’t warn the public about it. As a result, this pervasive technology that was designed to hide all traces, can now be used by cyber-mafias, foreign agents, hackers and by anyone for malicious purposes.

Part one of this WikiLeaks publication dubbed “Year Zero”, revealed the CIA’s global hacking force from 2013 to 2016. The thousands of documents released contain visceral revelations of the CIA’s own version of an NSA. With an ability to hack any Android or iPhone, as well as Samsung TVs and even cars, they spy on citizens, bypassing encrypted messaging apps like Signal and Telegram. The Vault 7 leaks that exposed the CIA’s excessive power is of great importance from a point of view of security for individual privacy. But it has larger significance tied to the mission of WikiLeaks.

Opening Government into the Deep State

Describing itself on its site as “a multi-national media organization and associated library”, WikiLeaks aims to open governments in order to bring justice. In the speech at the SWSX conference in Texas, delivered via Skype in 2014, Assange described the particular environment that spawned the culture of disclosure this organization helped to create. He noted how “we were living in some fictitious representation of what we thought was the world” and that the “true history of the world” is “all obscured by some kind of fog”. This founder and editor in chief of innovative journalism explained how disclosures made though their publications break this fog. The magnitude of this Vault 7 cache, which some say may be bigger than the Snowden revelations, perhaps lies in its effect of clearing the fog to let people around the world see the ground upon which the narratives of true history are written.

Since coming online in 2007, WikiLeaks has published more than 10 million documents. Each groundbreaking disclosure got us closer to where the real power of the world resides. In 2010, WikiLeaks rose to prominence with the publication of the Collateral Murder video. With the release of documents concerning US Wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, they hit on the nerves of the Pentagon – the central nervous system of the Military Industrial Complex. With the release of the US Diplomatic Cables, they angered the State Department and came head to head with this global superpower.

Last year, this unprecedented publisher with its perfect record of document authentication, began to blow the cover off American democracy a step further to clear the fog. WikiLeaks played an important role in the 2016 US Presidential election. The DNC leaks disrupted the prescribed script of corporate sponsored lesser of two evils charade politics. The publication of the Podesta emails that revealed internal workings of the Clinton campaign, gave the American people an opportunity to learn in real time about the function of the electoral arena as a mechanism of control.

With the demise of the Democratic Party, led by its own internal corruption, the cracks in this façade widened, unveiling the existence of a government within a government. People are beginning to glimpse those who seek to control behind the scenes – anonymous unelected actors who exercise enduring power in Washington by manipulating public perception. This unraveling that has been slowly unfolding, appeared to have reached a peak last month when Trump’s former National Security Adviser, Michael Flynn resigned. He was forced to do this on the grounds that leaked classified information revealed he was lying about his phone conversation discussing sanctions with the Russian Ambassador.

WikiLeaks now entered its 10th year. The momentum continues, bringing us to a new pinnacle of disclosure. At the end of last year, in anticipation of this new release, WikiLeaks tweeted, “If you thought 2016 was a big WikiLeaks year, 2017 will blow you away.” During the dramatic takedown of General Flynn, the media created a frenzy around unconfirmed claims that Russia was meddling with the US election and Putin’s alleged ties with Trump, creating another fog of obfuscation. It was in this climate that WikiLeaks published documents showing CIA espionage in the last French presidential election.

History Awakening

The idea of a shadow government has been the focus of political activists, while it has also been a subject of ridicule as conspiracy theories. Now, WikiLeaks’ pristine documents provide irrefutable evidence about this hidden sector of society. The term ‘deep state’ that is referenced in the mainstream media, first hit the major airwaves in 2014, in Bill Moyers’ interview with Mike Lofgren. This former congressional staff member discussed his essay titled “Anatomy of the Deep State” and explained it as the congruence of power emerging as a “hybrid of corporate America and national security state”.

We are now watching a deep state sword-fight against the elected Caesar of American plutocracy in this gladiator ring, surrounded by the cheers of liberal intelligentsia, who are maddened with McCarthy era hysteria. As the Republic is falling with its crumbling infrastructure and anemic debt economy, far away from the coliseum, crazed with the out-of-tune national anthem, the silent pulse of hope begins to whisper. WikiLeaks unlocked the vaults that had swallowed the stolen past. As the doors open into this hidden America, history awakens with dripping blood that runs deep inside the castle. As part of the release of this encrypted treasure-trove of documents, WikiLeaks posted on Twitter the following passphrase; “SplinterItIntoAThousandPiecesAndScatterItIntoTheWinds.” These were actually words spoken by President John F. Kennedy, a month before his assassination. His exact words were “I will splinter the CIA into a thousands pieces and scatter it into the wind” – which shows his attitude toward the CIA as an arm of the deep state and what many believe to be the real reason for his assassination.

The secret stream of history continues, taking control over every aspect of civil life and infecting the heart of democracy. The US has long since lost its way. We have been living in a fictitious representation of the flag and the White House. It is not judicial boundaries drawn by the Constitution or even the enlightenment ideals that once inspired the founders of this country that now guide the course of our lives. Tyranny of the old world casts its shadow, binding Congress, the Supreme Court and the President into a rule of oligarchy. CIA documents revealed that the US Consulate in Frankfurt was used as a covert hacking base, while CIA officers work under the cover of the State Department to penetrate with these intelligence operations. The Wall Street Journal now reports that President Trump has given the CIA expanded authority to carry out drone attacks, which was power that prior to that had only been given to the Pentagon.

Decisions that radically alter the direction of our society are not made in a fair democratic election, a public hearing or the senate floor. They are made in the FISA Court and secret grand juries, bypassing judicial warrants and democratic accountability. This hidden network of power that exists above the law entangles legislators, judges and the press into a web of deception through dirty money and corrupt influence. It controls perception of the past, present and future.

The Internet Generation

As the deep state comes to the surface, we are able to see the real battle on the horizon. What is revealed here is a clash of values and two radically different visions of a future civilization. In his response to the Vault 7 publication, Michael Hayden, the former CIA director was quick to lay blame on the millennials. He said, “This group of millennials and related groups simply have different understandings of the words loyalty, secrecy and transparency than certainly my generation did”. To him, these young people are the problem, as if their different cultural approach and instincts must be tempered and indoctrinated into this hierarchical system, so they know who their masters are.

Who are these people that are treated as a plague on society? This is the Internet generation, immersed with the culture of the free-net, freedom of speech and association. They believe in privacy for individuals, while demanding transparency for those in power. Peter Ludlow, a philosopher who writes under the pseudonym Urizenus Sklar, shared his observation of a cultural shift that happened in 2011. He noted that WikiLeaks had become a catalyst for an underground subculture of hackers that burst into the mainstream as a vital political force. Assange recognized this development in recent years as a “politicization of the youth connected to Internet” and acknowledged it as “the most significant thing that happened in the world since the 1960s”.

This new generation ran into the deep state and those who confront it are met with intense hostility. Despite his promise of becoming the most transparent government, Obama engaged in unprecedented persecution of whistleblowers. Now this dark legacy seems to be continuing with the present administration. Vice president Mike Pence vowed to “use the full force of the law” to hunt down those who released the Intelligence Agency’s secret material

As these conflicts heat up, resistance continues in the Internet that has now become a battleground. Despite crackdowns on truthtellers, these whistleblowers won’t go away. From Manning to Snowden, people inside institutions who have come to see subversion of government toward insidious control and want change, have shown extraordinary courage. According to a statement given to WikiLeaks, the source behind the CIA documents is following the steps of these predecessors. They want this information to be publicly debated and for people to understand the fact that the CIA created its own NSA without any oversight. The CIA claims its mission is to “aggressively collect foreign intelligence overseas to protect America from terrorists, hostile nation states and other adversaries”. With these documents that have now been brought back to the historical archive, the public can examine whether this agency has itself lost control and whose interests they truly serve.

The Future of Civilization

As the world’s first stateless 4th estate, WikiLeaks has opened up new territory where people can touch the ground of uncensored reality and claim creative power to participate in the history that is happening. In a press conference on Periscope, Assange made reference to a statement by the President of Microsoft, who called for the creation of a digital Geneva Convention to provide protection against nation-states and cyber-attacks. He then affirmed WikiLeaks’s role as a neutral digital Switzerland for people all over the world.

WikiLeaks is taking the first step toward this vision. After they carefully redacted the actual codes of CIA hacking tools, anonymized names and email addresses that were targeted, they announced that they will work with tech companies by giving them some exclusive access to the material. Assange explained that this could help them understand vulnerabilities and produce security fixes, to create a possible antidote to the CIA’s breach of security and offer countermeasures. WikiLeaks tweeted notifying the public that they now have contacted Apple, Microsoft, Google, Mozilla, and MicroTik to help protect users against CIA malware.

The Internet unleashed the beast that grows its force in the dark. Unaccounted power is dragging global society down into an Orwellian dystopia. Yet, from this same Internet, a new force is arising. Courage of the common people is breaking through the firewall of secrecy, creating a fortress that becomes ever more resilient, as the network of people around the world fighting for freedom expands. When democracy dies in darkness, it can be reborn in the light of transparency. The deep state stretches across borders, sucking people into an abyss of totalitarian control. At the same time, the epic publication of Vault 7 that has just begun, reminds us that the greatness in each of us can awaken to take back the power of emancipation and participate in this battle for democracy, the outcome of which could not only determine the future of the Internet, but of our civilization.

 

 

 

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